The Endgame Project

: Documentary
GENRE: Documentary
STATUS: Completed


When your body gives way, all that's left is heart. But is that enough to perform this play?


Samuel Beckett's ENDGAME is about Hamm and Clov, who play out a routine of repetitive sorrow as they await the end of their diminishing lives. THE ENDGAME PROJECT is about Chris and Dan, actors who have Parkinson's disease. We follow these actors as they mount Beckett's darkly comic masterpiece, the perfect vehicle to express the experience of living with Parkinson's.


Dan Moran and Chris Jones are New York actors. Both have Parkinson's disease. Parkinson's is a progressive disorder that disables the brain cells that help control movement and balance. Its cause is unknown. There is no known cure. And it affects all the elements that are essential to the craft of being an actor.

So it is an act of special bravery that Dan and Chris take on Beckett's dark comic masterpiece, ENDGAME, in which Beckett makes the case that "there's nothing funnier than unhappiness." Beckett is not easy. His estate mandates that not a line, not an action, be changed in any production of his work. There is no allowance for the vagaries of Parkinsons. But these two men see something special in the challenge of both performing Parkinsons disease and opening their lives to a documentary: the desire to show the world that people with this disease can meet even the most difficult circumstances.

By chronicling these men's journeys, we hope this film will inspire other people impacted by Parkinson's. But more important, it will provide the public with a model for understanding the growing number of people around us who live with Parkinson's disease.


Jim Bernfield - Producer/Director

Jim has written, directed, and produced award-winning films that have been broadcast and exhibited nationwide. Rally Behind the Virginians, a television documentary, aired on PBS. Two short films have won awards at film festivals around the country. His pilot, The Second Oldest Profession, won the Creative World Awards competition as the best television comedy. He wrote the teleplay It's Best Not to Know for an Italian production company's two-part miniseries based on the true story of two young sisters who survived the Holocaust at Auschwitz. Jim has also written, produced, and directed thousands of issue and advocacy advertisements for public interest groups and political campaigns, including media for the campaigns of the last four Democratic Presidential candidates. He earned his MFA in film directing at Columbia University's School of the Arts. He lost his father to Parkinson's ten years ago.

Steven Meyer - Co-producer/Editor

Steven is an award winning director and producer. He began his career in theater working with directors Liviu Ciuli, Garland Wright, Allan Schneider, Richard Foreman, and Marshall Mason as well as actors David Warrilow, Hume Cronyn, Jessica Tandy, Patti LuPone, and Val Kilmer. He toured with performance artist Laurie Anderson, produced commercials and visual effects for Nike, Benetton, the Biosphere in Arizona, Dennis Earl Moore, Edwin Schlossberg, Pink Floyd, and Janet Jackson. He also produced the Revolutionary War Theater 4D Experience for the George Washington Museum at Mt. Vernon, and VFX for the Sundance winner The Believer, directed by Henry Bean and Game 6, directed by Michael Hoffman. He directed the documentary Buried Prayers and is on the advisory board of Off-Broadway Audience Builders, promoting Off-Broadway and independent feature film projects.


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The Gotham Film & Media Institute - Fiscal Sponsorship Program 2021
2015-16 NYSCA grant recipient


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